Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Finding God's Presence ~ Ever Want to Speed Up the Clock?

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

"Moving the hands of a clock to suit you does not change the time."*

Oh, how I'm learning this lesson! I'm learning to live in the moment because God is in the moment with me, but it's a struggle not to take matters into my own hands. It's a struggle to wait on God and to trust Him in all things ... to trust in His sovereignty.

That's what is boils down to, isn't it?

His sovereignty. Absolute. Effectual. Excellent. Guiding. Highest. Majestic. Supreme Authority.

If I believe that the Lord has authority over all things, especially those things that concern me, then I must find a way to walk in the trust of that authority, for in that trust comes absolute peace. I'm learning to rest in the knowledge that the Lord has an appointed time for all things concerning me. His timing is perfect. His plan is bigger than my comprehension. 

And when I can stop trying to push His divine clock forward and wait on His perfect timing, my soul is at rest.

“This is what the Lord says—
    the Holy One of Israel, and its Maker:
Concerning things to come,
    do you question me about my children,
    or give me orders about the work of my hands?       
 It is I who made the earth
    and created mankind on it.
My own hands stretched out the heavens;
    I marshaled their starry hosts." 

~ Isaiah 45:11-12, NIV

If the Lord can stretch out the heavens, put the stars in place, if He can hold the seas in the hollow of His hands, then I believe He can be trusted with the intricacies of our lives. 

Isn't it nice not to carry this burden?

A Tweetable to Encourage Others

How can I find God's Presence while waiting? @NanJonesAuthor offers insight. (Click to Tweet)

*Stephen Merritt

If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page to worship with Darlene Zschech of Hillsong as she sings "Have Your Way." If you're struggling with something or if you're learning to trust God with all things, I know this song will give you strength for the journey.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Where is God? Sunday Glimpses

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

Father, Thank You for teaching me the way of peace. I'm learning to keep my thoughts focused on You - to be aware of You every moment of every day. In that sure place I find peace. When my world crumbles around me, I can still walk in peace that makes no sense because You are my peace. Thank You Lord. 

I ask the same for my friends who are struggling. Life is so hard at times. Overwhelming. Impossible. But you, Lord ... You are the God of impossibilities. Your ways are not our ways. Your thoughts are not our thoughts. You are wise. You are faithful and true, and when You instruct Your children to keep our eyes on You so that we might find peace, You know what You are talking about. Even though it may make no sense to us, I have found Your instructions to be true. Help us to do this Lord. Help us to bring our thoughts captive to You, to cast down all imaginations, and focus our eyes on Your beautiful face.

As we seek You we find our peace. As we place our hope in You alone, our hearts will rest in peace. You are amazing Lord. We yield to Your authority in our lives. You are our Lord and King. You are the Potter, we are the clay. Mold us and shape us into vessels for Your glory. Comfort us so that we may comfort others with the comfort we have received and thus lead them in the ways of Your peace. We are Yours, Lord and we are so thankful You are ours. We praise You for You alone are worthy of our praise.

A Tweetable to Encourage Others

How do I find Your peace, Lord? @NanJonesAuthor wants to help. (Click to Tweet)

Please do not carry your burden alone. I would be honored to pray with you. You may contact me directly at nan@jubilantlight.com

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Finding God's Presence ~ How Great is Our God!

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

Like the psalmist, my heart cried out, "Be merciful to me O God! Be merciful to me for my soul trusts in You. And in the shadow of Your wings I will make my refuge until these calamities have passed me by."*

Over and over I reminded myself who God is and who I am not.

Each airport sign along the interstate drew me closer and closer to the inevitable. I would soon be boarding a plane to Ft. Lauderdale. By myself ... as in all alone. And before I could board the plane I would have to navigate Charlotte Douglas International Airport. By myself ... as in all alone.

We passed another airport sign. My heart quivered. My faith stirred: "Be merciful to me O God! Be merciful to me for my soul trusts in You ..."

Just as sure as the sunlight streaming through the windshield, a peace settled over me like a blanket in the chill of a winter's night. The anxiety and fear had to flee because God's perfect love covered me and hid me in the shadow of His wing. And flee they did.

It was amazing.

As the plane soared upward through the atmosphere, cresting the cloud cover, and leveling off somewhere a very long way from earth, I gazed out the window. I could see layer upon layer of clouds, interspersed with blue sky. Some cloud formations were obviously thunderheads with their billowing crowns like shaving cream. Other clouds were but wisps, feather-like as they drifted through the heavens. Misty puffs scattered below us. Surely those are the clouds that are the dust of God's feet as He traipses across the heavens looking for those who need to be strengthened.

The magnificence of God surrounded me during the flight. I thought of His faithfulness that reaches to the clouds, of His grace that pours out like rain upon the needs of His children.

How great is our God!

How tender is His love that calmed my fears and sheltered me beneath the shadow of His wings.

 Your love, Lord, reaches to the heavens,
    your faithfulness to the skies.  
Your righteousness is like the highest mountains,
    your justice like the great deep.
    You, Lord, preserve both people and animals.
How priceless is your unfailing love, O God!
    People take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
~ Psalm 36:5-7, NIV

A Tweetable to Encourage Others 

If you received Morning Glory via email, please take a few minutes to visit the Morning Glory  page. I discovered an INCREDIBLE song by Darlene Zschech titled "It Is You." I know it will minister to you as much as it has to me.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Finding the Presence of God ~ The Fragrance of Exquisite Love

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

Sunlight streamed through the window, carrying its Florida heat into the air conditioned cool of the bus. I chatted with a stranger, soon to be friend, about the goodness of God. Kate, too, loved the Lord. We turned left off Highway 27 and made our way into a processing plant for Florida orange juice. Looming towers of metal were everywhere with Valencia oranges poking through the cages. 

Bobby, our tour guide, explained the crushing process as the oranges traveled through the plant. From time to time we'd get a whiff of sweet orange with a tinge of citrus acidity. The oranges went through their day plopping and bouncing and rolling along the belts preparing for the time of crushing. Great containers held the sweet juice that would help awake sleepy souls.

And then we rounded a curve. A heavenly aroma filled the air.

The bus stopped in front of two very large steel vats. I closed my eyes as the sweet fragrance wrapped itself around me. It was the oil of multitudes of crushed oranges. The fragrance was soft. Soothing. I felt my spirit lift as I soaked in this lovely aroma permeating every breath I took.

The Body of Christ is like this.

The fragrance of God's love is like this.

I was in Clewiston, Florida to speak at a ladies' event the following day. Through my own season of brokenness, I have learned of God's faithfulness and His amazing grace. I couldn't wait to minister to these precious sisters in Christ ... to help strengthen them in their faith.

But they ministered even more to me.

Their lives testified of God's faithfulness through the storms of life ... the gut-wrenching pain of betrayal, the horrific deaths of loved ones, fiery darts of bitterness and unforgiveness that crush our very souls.

And yet they hungered to know God more. 

The fragrance of their love wrapped itself around me, embraced me with the warmth of God's presence. Together we basked in His exquisite love. Together we helped one another heal.

Together we pressed into our Lord and were strengthened for the journey.

"In the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade. Through us, he brings knowledge of Christ. Everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance. Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God, which is recognized by those on the way of salvation—an aroma redolent with life. ~ 2 Corinthians 2:14-16, The Message

May our prayer be that everywhere we go, people will breathe in the exquisite fragrance of God's love.

A Tweetable to Encourage Others

What does the fragrance of God's love smell like? (Click to Tweet)

Many of you prayed for me last week as I traveled to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to speak at WINGS of Clewiston (Women in God's Service). I had a fabulous time with these ladies. I laughed and laughed, and hugged and hugged. Together, we experienced the comfort found in the shadow of His wings. Thank you so very much for your prayers. Sweet blessings to you.
If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page to be blessed by Matt Redman as he sings "The Father's Song." This video will help to quiet a restless heart.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Finding God's Presence ~ Where is God While I Wait?

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

I have the honor and privilege of speaking in Clewiston, Florida this weekend. The ladies of WINGS (Women in God's Service) are hosting a retreat for Christian women throughout their community. I'll be flying to Ft. Lauderdale on Thursday (March 19th) and returning on Sunday. I cherish your prayers during this time. If you're looking for a speaker for an upcoming event, I would love for you to prayerfully consider me.

I have felt the Lord bidding me to come to Him this week as I finish my preparations. I'm pressing into His Spirit, listening for His voice, His wisdom, and His discernment for the needs of the ladies who will be present. Because of this, I am rearranging my schedule this week and will not post Morning Glory again until next Tuesday, March 23rd.

While you're here, please take time to soak in some previous messages the Lord has given me. One of my favorites is The Chrysalis which explores the idea of waiting on God while we are in a time of transition. Waiting often involves dying to self and waiting for the beauty to rise from the ashes. That's no fun, is it? But when we open our eyes to find eternal purposes in our struggles, it helps us cope. I pray this message will be a source of encouragement to you.

May I pray for you?

Father, we praise Your holy Name! We exalt You Lord and bow before Your majesty. You are all-powerful, all-knowing and yet You delight in the camaraderie of Your children. I love that, Lord. I love how You care intimately for us - regardless of our need. Nothing is considered trivial to You if it is a concern of ours. I bring my friends before You - I bring their joys, their sorrows, their worries, and fears and, together, we lay them at Your feet. Nothing is too difficult for You, Lord. I ask that You show Yourself mighty in their lives as You meet their needs. Let them experience Your tender love as they witness Your mighty power. We love You so much Lord. It's such a blessing to be Your child. Thank You for making a way for us to know You.

A Tweetable to Encourage Others

Where is God while I wait? @NanJonesAuthor offers a glimpse. (Click to Tweet)

Guess what?! My first book, The Perils of a Pastor's Wife will be hitting the shelves soon! The copy I'm holding in this picture  was mailed out to beta readers last week to check for any final edits we may have missed. These edits will be applied in April and then we wait for our turn to launch. It's SO exciting! Be expecting The Perils of a Pastor's Wife sometime in June. I'll keep you posted. As always, prayers are appreciated. Sweet blessings to you.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Where Is God? Sunday Glimpses

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

Father, You are immovable. Unshakeable. You are mighty, yet tender in Your love for us. We give You praise for You alone are worthy of our praise. 

What a privilege it is to know You and to walk this earth with You. We are never alone because You, O Lord are with us, holding us by the right hand, sheltering us from the storms, hiding us from our enemies. Thank You for that amazing knowledge. Thank You Lord.

You promise that Your mercies are new every morning and I know that to be true. Your grace flows steady like a mountain stream caressing the stones in our lives - those hard places that try to separate us from You - making the rough places smooth. Thank You for Your grace and mercy that know no bounds. 

Thank you that truly Your grace is enough for whatever we face, for whatever we are called to endure ... Your grace is enough. Teach us to recognize Your grace actively penetrating our lives, making all things new, making all things work together for our good.

You are magnificent Lord. Forgive us for when we take You for granted, for those times we put You in a box and display You on a shelf for our glory rather than magnify Your name with our lives. Stir up our faith and cause it to spring forth with joy and purpose and tenacious grit. Help us to always walk by faith and not by sight. 

We can trust You Lord, and we do. We can hope in You Lord, and we do. When the enemy surrounds us, we can hide in You and we do. Blessed be the Name of the Lord.

A Tweetable to Encourage Others

Where is God when I want to hide? @NanJonesAuthor offers a glimpse. (Click to Tweet)

Please do not carry your burdens alone. I would be honored to pray for you. You may contact me directly at nan@jubilantlight.com

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Finding God's Presence ~ Show Me Your Glory

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

Guest Blogger: Denise Loock,   @DLoock

It's such a joy to introduce you to my editor and friend, Denise Loock. This remarkable woman loves to dig deep in God's Word to find nuggets of gold. She writes from a humble heart which draws her readers in, and then bathes them in the goodness of God. Join me now as Denise teaches us how to come boldly before the Lord and ask Him to show us His glory.

Welcome, Denise!

I didn’t want to get out of bed. But I had to. My two children needed to be awakened, dressed, fed, and taken to the bus stop. Discipline finally shoved my feet onto the floor.

The urge to cocoon myself in bedcovers nagged me every morning. Marital conflict had shredded the fabric of our family. The emotional and financial security I’d relied on for thirteen years lay in fragments. I was tempted to throw all the pieces into the garbage can.

The fabric of my faith seemed threadbare too. I mended it daily with prayer and Bible reading. But the constant strain of uncertainty, anger, and heartache created new holes morning, noon, and night.

One day’s devotional reading took me to Exodus 33. Spiritually bruised by the golden calf episode, Moses cried out to God, “Show me your glory.”

“That’s what I need, Lord,” I whispered. “Your glory. I need your presence to fill me with hope, to give me strength to make it through this day.”

“All my goodness will pass before you,” God said to Moses. And to me.


“Exactly,” God seemed to say. “I’m a good, faithful, compassionate God. I always do what is right. I did what was right for Moses. I’ll do what’s right for you.”

My broken heart throbbed, resisting the truth God’s Word spoke.

“My glory surrounds you all the time,” God assured me. “My goodness, mercy, righteousness, and love. Open your eyes.”

The throbbing eased. Calmness cocooned me. The comfort of God’s presence and the certainty of His promises seeped into my soul.

Another verse flitted across my mind, “The heavens declare the glory of God.”

The Holy Spirit within me whispered, “What are you declaring today?”

“I don’t have anything to give,” I murmured. “I’m empty. I need help. Strength. Wisdom.”

“To ask for what you need glorifies My name.”

“I’m such a mess, Lord. Thank You for loving me anyway, for the comfort of Your Word, for Your presence with me.”

“To thank Me for what you receive glorifies My name.”

Some days it’s difficult to see God’s glory. But that doesn’t mean it’s not present, anymore than a cloudy day means the sun isn’t present. Circumstances may eclipse God’s glory—the splendor of His character and the certainty of His promises—but they can never erase it.

In His mercy, God eventually mended my marriage, but other problems have arisen over the years. On many occasions the storm clouds of family conflicts, financial setbacks, and work-related stress have drenched my faith and veiled God’s glory.

Some days I ask God to show me His glory—not because I think it isn’t there, but because the eyes of my faith are too blurred by pride, anger, or pain to see it. I ask God to reveal Himself to me in simple ways: the grasp of a friend’s hand, the color wheel of a sunrise, a safe trip to the grocery store, or the sharp bite of dark chocolate.

I’m also learning to declare His glory whether I see it or not: to ask when I’m in need, to thank Him when I’ve received, and to pass His goodness on to others.

God’s glory surrounds us. Do our lives mirror its brilliance?

"Then he[Moses] said to Him, 'If Your Presence does not go with us, do not bring us up from here. For how then will it be known that Your people and I have found grace in Your sight, except You go with us? So we shall be separate, Your people and I, from all the people who are upon the face of the earth.' So the Lord said to Moses, 'I will also do this thing that you have spoken; for you have found grace in My sight, and I know you by name.' And Moses said, 'Please, show me Your glory.'" ~ Exodus 33:15-17

A Tweetable to Encourage Others

How can I see God's glory? Guest, Denise Loock shares. (Click to Tweet)


Denise Loock is a freelance writer, speaker, and editor. Her two devotionals, Open Your Hymnal and Open Your Hymnal Again, encourage readers to open their hearts to the timeless biblical truths that classic hymns and gospel songs contain. She is also the founder of Dig Deeper Devotions, a website dedicated to encouraging and enabling Christians to dig deeper into God’s Word.

As a nonfiction book editor, she uses her twenty-nine years’ experience as an English teacher to help Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas produce high quality, engaging inspirational books. As the editor for The Journey Christian Newspaper, she coordinates, edits, and proofreads articles for four print editions and the online edition (visit journeychristiannews.com). She also accepts freelance editing projects. Visit lightningeditingservices.com for details. Contact her at

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Finding God's Presence ~ Scarlet. The Color of God's Pursuant Love

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

The cool morning breeze wrapped its wings around my weary body, caressing my spirit, placing a song in my heart. I sensed the Lord's Presence, His tender mercies, His amazing love. From the corner of my eye a bright burst of red caught my attention - a male cardinal. His scarlet feathers stood in stark contrast to the deep shades of evergreen all around him. He chirped his happy song, feasted on the bounty of sunflower seeds in the feeder, and flitted from branch to branch in the century old cedar.

God's creation testified all about me.

The wings of the wind wrapped me in His love.

The morning light overcame the velvety darkness of the night, punctuating the dawn with apricot glory.

Like a scarlet thread woven into the holy draperies of the Old Testament Tabernacle, the scarlet song moving through the ancient cedar witnessed to my spirit and testified of God's love. I rocked mesmerized, and pondered the miracle of the Master weaving the scarlet color of His love all through history until it dripped from the nail-pierced hands of His Son, Jesus.

A scarlet thread secures us to the garment of righteousness, washing us white as snow.

A scarlet thread binds us to Him from generation to generation, bringing us strength for the journey. 

Scarlet. The color of atonement, the color of God's pursuant love.

And now, rocking on my porch, surrounded by the glory of creation, God's scarlet thread darting in and out of the evergreen singing a lovely song of praise, once again lifts my thoughts to the heavens and testifies of God's love.

"Oh, give thanks to the Lord! 
Call upon His name; 
Make known His deeds among the peoples! 
Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him; 
Talk of all His wondrous works! 
Glory in His holy name; 
Let the hearts of those 
rejoice who seek the Lord! 
Seek the Lord and His strength; 
Seek His face evermore!" 
~ 1 Chronicles 16:8-11

A Tweetable to Encourage Others

If you received Morning Glory via email,  please visit the Morning Glory page to listen to a powerful oldie goldie, "Written in Red" sung by Janet Paschal. This is such a powerful message. It's sure to lift you above the fray today.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Where is God? Sunday Glimpses

by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

Father, In Your all-consuming fire You are mighty. In Your all-consuming grace You are merciful. Faithful. Kind. Thank You. 

Thank You for teaching me the many facets of Your love. You are beyond comprehension and yet You know us by name. You created the heavens and the earth, You tell the ocean how far to come, You walk on the wings of the wind, and yet you know each tear that falls from my broken heart. That amazes me, Lord, and comforts me. I need Your love and assurance. I cherish the strength of Your Presence. You are Wonderful, Lord. You are Counselor. The Prince of Peace. You are my friend.

I ask that You hold those who are hurting and crumbling in their brokenness. Pour out Your Living Water into their weary spirits and let it flow over and under the broken places of their hearts to bring healing and restoration. Show Yourself mighty in their lives with tangible interventions of protection and provision. 

When my friends feel unworthy, let them know Your love. When they feel alone, let them know Your sweet Presence. Restore to them the joy of their salvation that they might worship You through their tears. 

Your love binds up the brokenhearted and sheds light into the dark recesses of our thoughts and hearts. For this we are thankful, Lord. We praise You for who You are. Bless Your holy Name!

Tweetables to Encourage Others

Where is God when my heart is breaking? @NanJonesAuthor draws you to Him. (Click to Tweet)

How do I find God's Presence? @NanJonesAuthor lends a hand. (Click to Tweet)

Do you need someone to pray for you? I would be honored. You may contact me directly at nan@jubilantlight.com